Sunday, December 28, 2008

Not quite the Osmonds

See this image? This is what life has been like at my parents house for the past week. Ever since Tim arrived, it's been All Rock Band All The Time. I swear this game must send out some sort of subliminal message to the male mind that tells them to play this game incessantly until they master it because they MUST master it! Must must must! Granted, I enjoy the game, too, but there's a certain gleam in the eyes of the males who play this game that isn't quite as powerful in the females. The other night my brother Mike was so engrossed that he plugged some headphones into the TV so he could continue practicing the guitar after my mother went to bed. And at what early hour did my mother choose to retire? Only 2 am. She's mildly addicted to Rock Band, too.

As you can see, we're having a really great time this holiday season. Sometimes we kids can get a bit spikey after hanging out with one another for a few days, but this time we've all gotten along really well. I actually find myself reluctant to leave the house because I want to spend time with my brothers. Wacky! Stranger still, all of us kids cleaned up the kitchen together yesterday without anyone asking us to lift a finger. What?!? Maybe the same messages that lure people into playing Rock Band for 12 hours a day also encourages tidiness & pleasant behavior. What a lovely thought.

This year's Xmas loot
* Cool photo prints of Mike's work
* Cookbooks! "Sticky Chewy Messy Gooey", a dessert book that is as faboo as it sounds, and "Back to Basics" by Ina Garten
* A new kaleidoscope made by my mom
* Last but certainly not least, Tim gave me an Acer Aspire One netbook! Just like george's! It's blue and cute and makes me so happy. Wee!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

In our version, Derek is John Candy & Tim is Steve Martin.

Have you ever had houseguests show up with very little notice? And although your guests were perfectly welcome, before they arrived you found yourself dashing around the house, hiding piles of mail, vaccuuming the carpets, checking the bathroom to make sure it didn't look scary, etc.? Well, imagine how it feels to discover that you're having a last-minute houseguest ... and you're over 1000 miles away from home.

Derek is in my house right now. Yes, Derek. In my house in NC. While I sit here in my parents' house in Oklahoma.

A mere 24 hours ago Derek was in New York on a business trip, preparing to fly back to Tulsa. Then a snowstorm hit & flights were canceled. The weather forecast gave the impression that Derek could be stuck in New York until next week ... unless, of course, he made a change of plans. A few phone calls later & Derek was driving south in a rental car towards North Carolina so that he could meet up with Tim and they could travel to Tulsa together. A brilliant plan! I wish I had a hand in planning it, but I was blissfully unconscious through all the hubub. The guys will drive for 2 days together, during which they'll be able to listen to as much heavy metal music as they want without annoying me or george. They'll even get to stay at the La Quinta together! It's perfect!

The only problem is that I am not there. And my newly-discovered Hostess Gene is freakin' out about that a tad. I feel a tiny bit embarassed because my house isn't really ready for overnight company. Don't get me wrong. I did a lot of tidying before I left town. Most of the house looks perfectly respectable. However, I tossed a bunch of crap in the guest room (like ya do) thinking that no one but the cat would be in that room over the next couple of weeks anyway, so why worry about it? As a result, I had to ask poor Tim to maneuver around the stuff I've gathered to donate to Goodwill and the piles of paid bills that need to be filed so that he can put sheets on the bed in the guest room. There's a whole half of the room where Derek cannot venture because of the layer of detritus that blankets the floor. Granted, it's not an impenetrably thick layer, but it's there nevertheless. Sigh. I don't even want to think about how little food is in the house. Ugh. I pride myself on being a good little hostess! And now my BestGuyPal is in my freakin' house for the first time ever & I'm not there!

The great thing, though, is that I know Derek won't care one bit. He'll be too exhausted from driving those 10 hours from Albany. Or he'll be too busy rubbing the belly of our sweet Millie kitty. Or he'll be too hypnotized by Rock Band. Or maybe he won't care because he's such a great old friend and that's just the way great old friends are.

Hope you have fun, boys. Drive safe!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Pirate George (aka "Girl, you got a panty on yo head")

I am in Tulsa! Wee!

I am sitting on george's couch right now, trying out her new tiny computer (I'm makng this post purely to test what it can do). I think it's called an Acer [Edit: It's an "Aspire One" made by Acer] & it's about half the size of a sheet of printer paper and I LOVE it! I covet it! I want one of my very own. Too bad Santa has probably already bought this year's gifts for me. However, if Santa or some other kind person finds themselves in possession of, oh, $350 or so, they could buy one for me [available at BestBuy, TigerDirect & other fine retailers!] I'd appreciate it VERY very much. Very. Really. Truly.

It's been a low key but fun night with dear georgious. We went to LaDonna's & talked about cheese with the proprieter. Then we ate cheap burgers at Full Moon. Before going to her pad, we went to Target where I informed george that I call g-strings "eyepatches" because that's what they look like to me. The following hilarity ensued.

You're welcome, world.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Top 10: What's Happenin'

I'm such a fan of Liz's bullet-point posts that I thought I'd do one of my own today. However, I'm not sure how to do bullets in Blogger, so I'll just do a top 10 list of What's Happening in Mary's Life Now.

1. I've been spending FAR far less time on-line lately. I sometimes go 2 or 3 days in a row without poking about on the internet. Does this mean I'm turning into a cantankerous old lady who is totally out of touch with the rest of the world? I mean, I haven't watched a cute video of fluffy baby animals in nearly a week. Is that good or bad?

2. A friend of mine has been diagnosed with breast cancer in both breasts. I'm still a little too shocked about this to discuss it. Her surgery is December 30th.

3. I made Yorkshire puddings for the first time ever. Tim says they were perfect. Note: Yorkshire puddings are very similar to popovers.

4. My next-door neighbors are living my worst nightmare. Their names are Alex & Maria (and their daughter, Auriela). Alex is originally from El Salvador and, due to various visa issues, he was deported recently. Yup. The US government shipped him away. His wife, Maria, is an American & she is doing all she can to get her husband back in the US, but it's going to take a long time to get everything straightened out. This week she and their daughter moved to El Salvador to be with Alex until this whole mess is fixed. Can you imagine? Ugh.

5. Immigration officials have NOT carted Tim off anywhere. Speaking of Tim, he's working a lot of late nights because the game he has been working on for the past 2 years is almost finished! Woot!

6. Speaking of video games, I have a confession to make: I am enjoying Rock Band 2 far more than I expected. Tim likes to play the bass guitar while I sing along. The super-creepy part is that some of our favorite songs to play are by bands like Boston and Kansas. Ordinarily I don't like these songs so much, but playing them is a whoooole other matter. I'd be thrilled if there were more '80s tracks on this game (I'm dying for some Hall & Oats!). There's a smattering of Duran Duran & a few other bands, but we fear that the popularity of synthesizers and saxophones back then makes it difficult for songs of that era to translate well in this game. Sigh.

7. I got the itch to knit again. Check out my latest project here: Versatility on

8. I scored a FABULOUS dress for super cheap at Target! It was normally $50, but I got it for $12. It's very cute and classy and perfect (V owns this dress, too, natch). I also got some really adorable heels for $12. A swanky outfit for less than $25! Hooray for fab sales!

9. I was planning on wearing this amazing ensemble to the annual office Xmas party, but alas, that won't happen after all. The party had to be rescheduled for the day after I fly off to Oklahoma. Boo.

10. I arrive in Tulsa on December 17th. That's less than a week away! Eeee!

So just to sum up ... when I'm not cooking, knitting, or shopping, I'm singing along to "Carry On My Wayward Son" in our living room. And before too long, I'll be singing in my parents' living room, too. So despite the occasional blips of cancer and deportation, life is all good.

Monday, December 01, 2008

"As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly"

Happy Monday, all! I know Thanksgiving was a few days ago, but it's not too late for me to share with you one of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions of all time.

Recently I was trying to explain this episode to Tim. Now thanks to YouTube (and a person who goes by the name of CrystalCheats) perhaps he can finally appreciate the glorious wonder that was WKRP.

So what did you all do for Turkey Day? As usual, Tim and I went to the home of our friend, Doree (pronounced Door-AY). For those of you who don't know, we met Doree through the same website where Tim and I met. She is the owner of a certain, famous chicken that was previously featured on this blog. Unfortunately, Doree wasn't able to be with us! Her job kept her in Africa this Thanksgiving, but we carried on as best we could without her. Her husband, Chris, made a fabulous dinner & many others (myself included) brought sides & dessert. It wasn't the same without Doree's effervescent spirit, though. Larissa - Doree's niece - decided we should all do our own part to fill the void. She got out a blonde wig & a camera & istructed us to do our best Doree impressions. Here's a small sample.

Here's Chris, Doree's husband and our gracious host.

Here's Larissa, Doree's very favoritist neice ever.

Here's Larissa's best Doree impression. Note: the following image was taken BEFORE the bottles of bubbly were opened.

Larissa's baby boy, Finn. He's obviously trying to capture Doree's hangover face.

Here's Meryl, Doree's best friend, showing us all how very important champagne is to her BFF.

Tim flirts with that certain Doree style.

Are we starting to make our beloved friend look like a floozy and a lush? Be honest with me now.

As you can see, despite the absence of dear Doree, we still had a great time hanging out with the gang. If you're looking for a little fun next Thanksgiving, let me know & I'll get you a spot at their table.